Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

Welcome to Varied Expressions of Worship

This blog will be written from an orthodox Christian point of view. There may be some topic that is out of bounds, but at present I don't know what it will be. Politics is a part of life. Theology and philosophy are disciplines that we all participate in even if we don't think so. The Bible has a lot to say about economics. How about self defense? Is war ethical? Think of all the things that someone tells you we should not touch and let's give it a try. Everything that is a part of life should be an expression of worship.

Keep it courteous and be kind to those less blessed than you, but by all means don't worry about agreeing. We learn more when we get backed into a corner.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Opus 2011-82, The Death of the Sabbath

(Exodus 20:9-11 KJV)  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:  But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:  For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

How has the Biblical faith influenced our culture?  Let me lift out one item:  The Sabbath.  When God created our world and the people on it, the Bible says that on the seventh day He rested, or sabbathed.  As you can see in the verses above, a day of rest was mandated by God for all.  Notice that the rest was extended to the servants, foreign visitors and even the animals.  The tradition of the Jewish and Christian cultures is to have one day a week when no work was done.

Historically we see that the working classes did not need to agitate for a six day week.  They already had it.  Sunday school is not in the Bible.  It was started during the industrial revolution as a way of trying to educate the children locked into the labor grind.  Sunday was the day they did not work so the churches started Sunday Schools to teach them not only the Bible but the three “R’s” also.

When I was a child you could not do any shopping on Sunday because all the stores were closed.  I remember when Sears started opening for half a day on Sunday.  I remember when people did not always go out to eat on Sunday.  You could be a waitress or sales clerk and still expect to attend church on Sunday.  Some states made these traditions official with what were called “blue laws.”  This regulated what business could be done on Sunday.

Gradually this tradition has been eroded until now it is almost gone.  Sunday is a big day in the parks, restaurants and malls.  It is like a weekly holiday and people forget where it came from.  What that means is that more people are being expected to work on Sunday.  You can’t shop in the mall unless the mall employees are on the clock.  Gradually more and more people are being required to work on Sunday if they want to work.  Some businesses still pay extra for week ends but my guess is that as the tradition disappears, so will the bigger pay checks.

My prophecy is that the privilege will gradually disappear.  Christians will be expected to work on a day that God has said, “Don’t.”  We will have no one to blame but ourselves.  Without the religious force behind it I would not be surprised if we don’t see a move back to longer work weeks.  It isn’t happening yet, but wait a few years.  If we do not acknowledge that God has declared us special and needing a day of rest the forces of elitism will decide that we don’t need that dignity.

So enjoy your soccer and bike clubs.  Look for weekend specials at the mall.  Enjoy time with your family while you can.  Just as Christmas is becoming pagan as the “reason for the season” is ignored, so the weekend will become a source of bondage instead of a cause of celebration.

Mark my words.

homo unius libri

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Comments are welcome. Feel free to agree or disagree but keep it clean, courteous and short. I heard some shorthand on a podcast: TLDR, Too long, didn't read.